Satomi Matoba


Satomi Matoba is a Japanese artist born and living in Hiroshima. She gained her BA in painting in Japan in 1983 and her MA in Fine Art from Chelsea College of Art in the UK in 1996. She lived in London from 1995 to 2001, and her experience of being a marginal person in this period formed a rich ground for her later works. In 1998, she started a series of composite maps entitled Map of Utopia, made by reconfiguring familiar maps. The series was initially conceived to connect people in distant locations and alien cultures by stimulating their imaginations and interest towards each other. Later it was developed to represent Matoba’s view of the world as a kind of no-man’s land between cultures and to reveal the ambiguous and confusing potential within globalization.

Matoba’s map works have been exhibited in numerous countries and published in several books and magazines including City A-Z (edited by Steve Pile & Nigel Thrift, 2000), The Map Book (edited by Peter Barber, 2005), and Imago Mundi Vol. 57 (in a paper by Denis Cosgrove, 2005).

Since her return to Japan in 2002, Matoba’s practice has expanded to include curation of exhibitions, installation with photography and video, as well as other types of map making. Her works always ask viewers the same question. “Where are we? Is the world what we thought it was?” By creating new views of time and space, she wishes to generate a field of experience and thought where people can feel reality differently.

Currently Satomi Matoba is a part-time lecturer at Hijiyama University and Hijiyama University Junior College.

Selected Exhibitions:
1998 Solo exhibition in a show window space In Vitro and on billboards in several locations in central Geneva (Switzerland)  

1999 Remappings, Cable Street Gallery, London (UK)

2002 The Map is Not the Territory 2, England and Co Gallery, London (UK)

2003 Crossing, curation and organization of an international multi-media art project in an underground public plaza and streets in Hiroshima city (Japan)

2003 Room Air, IT Park Gallery, Taipei (Taiwan)

2004 Eco Metro, Gwangju Biennale, Site 4, subway stations and trains in Gwangju city (Korea)

2005 ARTOM 60, Former Bank of Japan Hiroshima Branch (Japan)

2006 The City and the Stars, Landesamt für Vermessung und Geoinformation, Munich (Germany)

2006 Akitsu DNA, a triennale exhibition of site specific art projects taken place in various locations in a characteristic historical village in Higashi-Hiroshima City, also participated in 2009: Shiwabori DNA, and 2012: Uyama DNA (Japan)

2007 Japanese Culture and Art, Hiroshima University Library (Japan)

2007 (C)artography, Crawford Art Gallery, Cork (Ireland)

2008 Inner Lines, ITA Centre, Machkhowa, Guwahati (India)

2009 Tales from the New World , the 10th Havana Biennial, Pabellón Cuba, Havana (Cuba)

2011 Répons, Rolex Learning Center, Lausanne (Switzerland)

2011 Mappa Mundi, Museu Colecção Berardo, Lisbon (Portugal)

2014 Camera Obscura 8, Higashikumin Bunka Centre, Hiroshima (Japan)